Cycling lanes

Cycling lanes

Cycling lanes

First published in Letters

I AM surprised there is talk of making it easier for cycling in Northwich by making cycle lanes available on the roads.

A white line on the road will not make cyclists safer, but educating the cyclist and the motorist in the Highway Code "Think Bicycle" and cycling proficiency for cyclists will.

The cyclists have it easy in Northwich already.

They blatantly ride on the pavements and the pedestrianised areas in the town with an ignorance of the law and a disregard to pedestrians weaving in and out of them.

I am blind in my right eye and severely sighted in my left eye and have been nearly knocked down on stepping out of my house onto the pavement on Chester Road, Castle, where the practice is rife.

It is not just the hoodie brigade but burly men in high vision work jackets, women with shopping baskets and a diverse cross section of humanity all without lights after dark.

What infuriates me more are people with all the protective gear and hard hats and side panniers cycling on the pavement, what chance has a pedestrian of not getting severely injured?

All it needs is the pedestrian to be knocked over and have a bang to the skull to die. Will all pedestrians have to wear hard hats?

We do not have to shoot out cyclists' tyres to bring everything to order because there is a law in force to combat cyclists riding on the pavement.

It is under Section 72 of the Highways Act 1835 amended by section 85 (1) of the Local Government Act 1888.

This states that there is a fixed penalty notice of £30, for careless cycling a £1,000 fine and dangerous cycling a £2,500 fine.

The enforcement of these being an operational matter for the police as riding a bicycle on the pavement is classed as a minor offence.

Now we see why there are so many cyclists on the pavements, could it be lack of police manpower, too much paperwork for a minor offence, lack of ability to get the fine from the offender through lack of ID or even worse, a blatant disregard and the turning of a blind eye to the law on cycling on the pavement.

How many more offences against the laws of the land and people’s complaints will be ignored?

I know the police have a hard time, but blame the Government for not giving them more money for increased manpower and ourselves for not paying higher taxes and also the high powered tax evaders.

The police are getting to be a very thin blue line.

Alan Keen Massey Castle

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